Amazon.com buys Stanza e-book app maker Lexcycle

Apr 28, 2009

(AP) -- Kindle e-book retailer Amazon.com Inc. has purchased Lexcycle, a year-old company that makes the iPhone e-book application Stanza, in a move that ratchets up Amazon's presence in the electronic book market.

Financial terms weren't disclosed.

Stanza allows users to read e-books in the "epub" format, which is an open standard supported by the International Digital Publishing Forum that many publishers use to create e-book files. Amazon.com's Kindle does not support the format, but Sony Corp.'s competing Reader device - which sells for $300 or $400 depending on the model - does.

Users of Apple Inc.'s and iPod Touch devices can use Stanza to download more than 100,000 books and periodicals to their phones, and Stanza desktop lets users read on their personal computers. Lexcycle said that more than one million users downloaded Stanza between mid-July and Dec. 31.

Seattle-based Amazon started selling the Kindle electronic in late 2007 and in February of this year launched the latest version of its $359 e-book device, Kindle 2. The company's online Kindle Store now includes more than 270,000 books and other reading material. It also recently rolled out free Kindle functions to iPhone and iPod Touch users to read the same electronic books that owners can buy on Amazon.com.

However, unlike Stanza, Amazon's iPhone app lacks an e-book purchasing feature. Users must access the Web browser on their iPhone, iPod or computer to buy the books.

Lexcycle was founded in early 2008 and has offices in both Austin, Texas and Portland, Ore.

"It has been an amazing experience to see Stanza grow out of our brainstormed ideas into one of the most downloaded iPhone applications," said Lexcycle founder Marc Prud'hommeaux in a statement on his company blog. "We are not planning any changes in the Stanza application or user experience as a result of the acquisition."

Calls to Amazon.com seeking comment weren't immediately returned late Monday.

©2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Explore further: China criticizes Alibaba in report withheld until after IPO

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Sony e-book reader gets 500,000 books from Google

Mar 19, 2009

(AP) -- Google Inc. is making half a million books, unprotected by copyright, available for free on Sony Corp.'s electronic book-reading device, the companies were set to announce Thursday.

Group protests Kindle e-reader's read-aloud limits

Apr 07, 2009

(AP) -- A group representing the blind and other people with disabilities protested limitations to the new read-aloud feature on Amazon.com Inc.'s latest Kindle electronic reader Tuesday, arguing that the ...

Kindle 2 will no doubt find lots of new fans

Apr 01, 2009

The Kindle 2, the second version of Amazon's breakthrough electronic book reader, is cheaper ($359), thinner (0.36 inches), can hold more books (more than 1,500 compared with 200), and has a longer battery ...

Recommended for you

Nintendo's nine-month profit jumps on cheap yen

4 hours ago

Nintendo reported a nearly six-fold increase in profit for the first three quarters of the fiscal year Wednesday and raised its earnings forecast as a cheap yen masked weak sales.

SK Hynix Q4 profit doubles to record level

4 hours ago

South Korean chipmaker SK Hynix said Wednesday its profits more than doubled in the fourth quarter to a record high, thanks to the soaring popularity of new mobile devices such as Apple's iPhones.

After setting iPhone record, what does Apple do next?

4 hours ago

Apple CEO Tim Cook says consumer demand for new iPhones has been "staggering" and "hard to comprehend." That helped the company report record-smashing earnings for its latest quarter and primed its stock ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.